Updated: Heat prompts area schools to close early
Early dismissal set in Bement, Tuscola, Catlin, Monticello, Champaign, Danville, PBL among others
School will let out early today in several area districts.
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With weather service officials predicting "dangerous" heat, superintendents in Bement, Monticello and Tuscola said Sunday they would send students home at 2 p.m.
Catlin schools will be dismissed at 2 p.m. both today and Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Champaign school district spokeswoman Stephanie Stuart said Central High School, which doesn't have air conditioning, will dismiss at 1:05 p.m.
Danville High School will dismiss at 1:55 p.m. today and Tuesday due to the heat index.
Also, Paxton-Buckley-Loda schools will let out early today and Tuesday: 2 p.m. for elementary, 2:05 for high school and 2:10 for middle school.
Superintendents of other area districts said they would monitor the forecast — which calls for highs in the low- to mid-90s today and Tuesday — but didn't plan to end early as of Sunday night.
"All schools are air-conditioned. It is so terrific to know we will have uninterrupted first weeks of school," said Rantoul City Schools Superintendent Michelle Ramage.
It's a similar story in Villa Grove, said Superintendent Mary Ann Manos: "We installed air conditioners, and all the classrooms have fans — cool and comfortable."
Other districts to report Sunday night that classes were a go all day: Arcola, Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley, Holy Cross, Judah Christian, Mahomet-Seymour, St. Joseph Elementary, St. Thomas More, Unity and Urbana.
What it could feel like this afternoon. The National Weather Service says "dangerous" heat-index readings will be highest between noon and 6 p.m. today and Tuesday.
When at least four area school districts will let kids out early — Bement, Catlin, Monticello and Tuscola. A decision on Champaign Central will be made by 10 a.m.
After the next two days, the rest of the week should be more bearable — temperatures in the 80s with occasional showers and thunderstorms.